2021 Pegasus World Cup: Tax

In the days leading up to the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida, usracing.com will profile the horses in the race set for Jan. 23. The profiles will be updated on Jan. 20 with morning-line odds, post positions and jockeys.

By Ed McNamara

He was bred by venerable Claiborne Farm, the undisputed all-time leader in clever names. This gelding got his through a play off his dam’s, Toll. Not many Claiborne products end up in maiden claimers as 2-year-olds, but that’s where trainer Danny Gargan grabbed Tax for $50,000 out of a race he won at Keeneland in October 2018.

Gargan has been unusually successful with claims, and this was one of his best. Six weeks later, Tax ran third in the Grade 2 Remsen at Aqueduct. The next winter, Tax was on the Triple Crown trail, and he had a solid season. Although he struggled in the marquee races — 14th in the Kentucky Derby, fourth in the Belmont, seventh in the Travers — he won the Withers and Jim Dandy and ran second in the Wood Memorial.

He’ll be trying to improve upon his ninth-place finish behind Mucho Gusto in last year’s Pegasus. He prepped for it impressively at Gulfstream on Dec. 12, when he missed the track record for 1 1/16 miles by .18 of a second in a 4 1/2-length romp in the ungraded Harlan’s Holiday Stakes. He led throughout, so maybe he can put a little pressure on front-runner Knicks Go in the Pegasus.

“We were just saving him for the next time,” jockey Luis Saez said.

Nine furlongs is Tax’s best distance, so consider him a contender with an outside shot.

RELATED: 2021 Pegasus World Cup: Code Of Honor

Pegasus World Cup Profile: Tax

Post position: TBD

Odds: TBD

Trainer: Danny Gargan

Jockey: Luis Saez

Owner: Hugh Lynch, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, R.A. Hill Stable

Age: 5

Career record: 13-4-3-1

Career earnings: $957,060

Top Equibase speed figure: 115

Pedigree: Arch-Toll, by Giant’s Causeway

Color: Dark bay

Running style: Speed/stalker

Notes: Tax has won three graded stakes but no Grade 1 … Gargan, a personable native of Louisville, said: “I think this will be his best year. He’s grown, developed. He’s sound. He’s bigger, stronger than he’s ever been.” … The Harlan’s Holiday was his return off a seven-month layoff, so he’s still fresh and should have more to give … Worked 4 furlongs in 48.00 seconds on Jan. 15 at Palm Meadows Training Center.

Pegasus World Cup Contenders

Code of Honor
Shug McGaughey
W.S. Farish
Harpers First Ride
Claudio A. Gonzalez
MCA Racing Stable LLc
Jesus’ Team
Jose D’Angelo
Grupo 7C Racing Stable
Kiss Today Goodbye
J. Eric Kruljac
John Sondereker
Knicks Go
Brad Cox
Korea Racing Authority
Mr Freeze
Dale Romans
Jim Bakke, Gerald Isbister
Sleepy Eyes Todd
Miguel Angel Silva
Thumbs Up Racing, LLC
Danny Gargan
R.A. Hill Stable, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Hugh Lynch
True Timber
Jack Sisterson
Calumet Farm
Math Wizard
Saffie Joseph Jr.
John Fanelli, Khalid Mishref, Cash is King LLC, LC Racing LLC, Collarmele Vitelli Stables LLC, Ioannis, Zouas, Bassett Stables
Independence Hall
Michael W. McCarthy
Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Twin Creeks Racing Stables, LLC, Verratti, Kathleen and Verratti, Robert N.
Coastal Defense
Dale Romans
Albaugh Family Stables LLC and Helen K. Groves Revocable Trust
Posted on